The team from Greater Wellington Regional Council worked on community engagement in the first Lightning Lab GovTech programme in 2o18, with the aim to develop tools to help the Council better connect and engage with the 500,000 people that live within the extraordinary Wellington region.
Tell us about Mārama.
Mārama is a formal consultation platform developed with users to enhance their experience. Mārama promotes ease of use, transparency and understanding of the decisionmaking process. Users will be able to contribute with ease, understand why and when projects are happening, see the wider community’s viewpoints, track their feedback through the process and understand how it comes together with other inputs to influence final decisions.
What have you been up to since the end of Lightning Lab GovTech 2018?
We have applied all of the lessons we learned from creating Mārama to our current engagement platform, Have Your Say (HYS). We are planning to test changes with HYS users over the next few months. We will use an iterative approach, by taking their feedback on board and test how it can be applied. We also hope this workstream will grow as part of the next Long-Term Planning process.
During and after the accelerator, we had a lot of questions about the programme from colleagues. It’s been great to share everything we learnt from Lightning Lab GovTech with our wider Greater Wellington teams.
How did Lightning Lab GovTech help your project?
The programme allowed us to work differently and with support from mentors, coaches and other teams. The ability to pick other people’s brains, swap ideas and learn from each other’s mistakes, sped up our innovative process immensely.
What’s your advice for future Lightning Lab GovTech project teams?
Get as clear as you can on what exactly the problem is you’re trying to solve — and remember to focus on your users!